Christian Arnold, Islanders Point Blank:There were fights, there were goals, and there was an Islanders win.
The Islanders defeated the New Jersey Devils 5-3 at the Prudential Center in the team’s second preseason game of the 2013-14 campaign. Josh Bailey, Anders Lee, Peter Regin and Eric Boulton all recorded a goal in the Isles win. Bailey netted two, both shorthanded tallies.
“I though the kids played extremely well tonight,” Islander head coach Jack Capuano said after the game. “I couldn’t be more proud of them. I told them before the game, I thought we were a little tight in Calgary and Regina. Just go out their, play poised, play within the team concept and I thought tonight for the most part we did that.”
New York started off the game quickly, scoring in the first four minutes of the game. Anders Lee registered his first goal of the game on the power play 3:32 into the contest. A little over three minutes later Josh Bailey scored short handed off a feed from Kyle Okposo to give the Islanders a 2-0 lead. Rostislav Olesz scored for New Jersey moments after the Bailey goal to cut the Isles lead to one.
Late in the first period, with the Islanders once again on the penalty kill, Josh Bailey scored yet another shorthanded goal to give New York the 3-1 lead. And with less than 30 seconds remaining in the opening period, Eric Boulton scored on a breakaway to give the Islanders a 4-1 lead.
The Devils would mount a comeback early in the second period, scoring two goals in roughly two minutes, to cut the Islanders lead to just one. Isles starter Kevin Poulin would regain control and turn aside the rest of the shots he faced. He finished the game stopping 20 of the 23 shots he faced.
“It’s been a while since I played a full game. I felt pretty good out there.” Poulin said. “Maybe on the first shot I was a little nervous, but you get that first save, that second save and you just build that momentum.”
Peter Regin scored on a breakaway 3:43 into the third period and put the game away.
“I thought we played well,” Kyle Okposo said. “We have a group of young players and they came in here and did their job.”
The preseason match up was a physical one that saw five fights take place, three of which featured Brett Gallant and Krystofer Barch.
“No team is going to take liberties on us,” Capuano said. “I think the guys really played hard for one another. It’s part of the game with the fisticuffs, but for us it was a good feeling in the room in between periods. A good attitude amongst the guys and like I said they worked hard.”
The Islanders practice Friday at Nassau Coliseum before their next exhibition game on Saturday at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.